Dear Church Family and Friends,
Are you thriving? We’ve seen that God desires for each of his children to be reaching in three different directions as part of their Christian life: up, in, and out. So, are you reaching? Specifically, are you reaching out?
Several weeks ago, our church adopted a mission statement that summarizes God’s purpose for us. It begins: “Central Baptist Church exists to glorify God in making disciples of Jesus Christ from all peoples, by declaring His Gospel…” This is very different from saying “We want our church to grow.” Instead it acknowledges God’s design and our duty: bringing glory to God by bringing people to Christ. My question to you (and I hope you answer!) is this: What responsibility do you think lies with you in fulfilling our purpose?
In other words, if this is truly God’s desire for us as a church, what role do you think belongs to you? What is your role in bringing people to Christ? What is your role in declaring Christ’s Gospel?
It’s hard to escape the Biblical idea that this responsibility lies with each and every member of the church. I realize it might be easy to take those Scriptures that command us to proclaim the Gospel and simply pass them off as if they were directed to “other” people, like apostles or missionaries or pastors. But when we read Acts 1:8, it seems clear that if you’ve been given the Holy Spirit (and every true Christian has, says Rom. 8:9), then God intends you to be a witness.
What kind of witness? Well, if the Gospel is a message that contains words, I suppose God means for us to be verbal witnesses. That is, there is a message of words that we are to share. Of course, there are always those who wish to rely only upon their lives to bear witness, but I would challenge you to compare the lives of the best Christian, the best Mormon, and the best Muslim you can find. Not much difference on the outside, except maybe in what church they go to. Lifestyle is important – indeed, essential – to the Gospel witness, but it cannot witness to the truth all by itself.
So, let each of us be reaching out. There are many different ways to do this, limited only by our willingness! Find someone you can talk to, and then talk about Christ. The way that happens is up to you and the Lord, but by His grace, lets make sure it happens!
For His glory and your joy,